Chances are you have seen a lot of help wanted signs lately.
Many businesses across Northern Michigan have been struggling to hire employees and fill positions.
Upper Peninsula Michigan Works is launching a new campaign to help address the problem in the UP.
“We have a big huge following of people that come every single year,” said Lehto’s Pasties manager Cindy Jones.
Since 1947, Lehto’s Pasties has been serving up the UP staple and this summer was no different, even while short staffed.
“The employee process of hiring has been kind of difficult, we’ve been down one to two people for the whole summer,” Jones said.
She says very few have even applied, but the family owned business toughed it out.
“The owners stepped in, and they started helping us a little bit,” Jones said.
While it was a tough summer being short staffed, Jones says they are fortunate.
“We were very thankful for the business that we had, but it was, it was a challenging summer for all the employees in the whole town,” Jones said.
They are not the only UP business struggling to find employees.
Upper Peninsula Michigan Works estimates there to be about 1,000 open positions.
They’ve launched a new campaign aimed at capturing people’s attention and spreading the word that businesses are hiring.
They believe the issue is so severe it may force some businesses to close.
My concern right now is helping our U.P. businesses keep their doors open,” said CEO Bill Raymond. “My bigger and more longer-term concern is that by the time employees are ready to return to work (when benefits run out), there will not be job opportunities.”
He says getting back to work is critical.
Back at Lehto’s, Jones says they’re still hiring as they go into the winter season.
“We are still looking,” Jones said. “If anybody wants a job, we are hiring and we’d love to have you come and apply.”
For more information about Michigan Works! services, please navigate to our Job Seeker Services page.